March 28, 2023
Susan Mayne, director of the FDA's Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition, announced on Monday that she is stepping down as of May 31, 2023.
The Center is part of the Food and Drug Administration’s food program and is responsible for part of the agency’s food safety work.
As CFSAN director, Mayne worked to implement the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA), led labeling reforms, and spearheaded the use of new science at FDA through actions including standardizing whole genome sequencing for food safety issues and the first no questions letters for cultivated meat companies.
As the Human Foods program at FDA is getting restructured, due to Mayne’s retirement, there will be vacancies in leadership at both of the major divisions that deal with food. Former Deputy Commissioner for Food Policy and Response Frank Yiannas just resigned in February.
In a note from Mayne distributed by CFSAN and shared by FDA staff, she noted she’s been eligible for retirement since 2021. She added that she strongly supports FDA Commissioner Robert Califf’s efforts to overhaul the Human Foods program, and that helped her decision on retirement timing.
Mayne said in the note that it "is time for me to pass the leadership baton to a new generation of leadership who can commit to implementing the Commissioner’s vision in the coming years."
She came to FDA after a long career in academia. She spent nearly three decades at Yale University, serving in this time in two leadership roles: chairman of the chronic disease epidemiology department and associate director of the Yale Cancer Center.
Mayne has been author or co-author of nearly 250 scientific publications on food, nutrition, and health.
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